The father, who is recovering, received a head injury, fractured back vertebrae and a broken elbow, he said. The Post is identifying the man only by his first name – Dave – because he’s a victim and Denver police confirm his assailants have not been arrested. The attack happened about 8:30 p.m. Wednesday at the park, 2205 19th St., on the edge of downtown Denver near Coors Field.
Dave, a machinist who lives in Arvada, said he took his children — two boys, both 13, and a daughter, 11 — to the park for a night of fun. They got there about 7:45 and skated for a while. Dave uses a long board known as a “mountain board” or a “dirt board”. After about 30 minutes Dave watched as a group chased an individual across the park. As a pursuer ran by, Dave asked: “What’s going on?” The man turned to Dave, cursed at him, and told him to leave. The words had just passed from the man’s mouth when Dave was slammed with a skateboard from behind, he said.
“I guess just me asking was enough for them to clock me,” Dave said. Immediately, others joined in and started beating Dave with skateboards. A friend of Dave’s who was there tried to help him and he was attacked, as well. The friend’s injuries were not as serious. The Denver Police Deparment is investigating the attacks. Police spokesman Sonny Jackson said the incident started when park users exchanged taunts and insults, and it escalated.
“There was an argument between two individuals, guys leaving the park, and words were exchanged,” Jackson said. “Guys got out of a car and attacked the one individual.” “There was a couple of older skate boarders, a crowd attacked them as well,” Jackson said. Dave says he is one of those older boarders. “One guy suffered some serious injuries.” Patrol officers responded the night of the attacks, but by the time they got there, the attackers had scattered, Dave said. After the attack, Dave drove his children home. “I just wanted to make sure they were safe,” he said, and he then drove himself to Lutheran Medical Center. He was at the hospital for eight hours.
Dave said a CT-scan revealed that he suffered a brain bruise. He got six staples in his head and stitches in his elbow. During the attack, Dave said he heard his daughter screaming. “I did fear for them, I was worried because they were right there,” Dave recalled. “I’ll never take my kids down there again.” Police spokesman Jackson said the incident “appears to be isolated.” The park is safe, he said. “There doesn’t seem to be a pattern (of assaults) going on,” Jackson said. “We are concerned. We are definitely investigating it.”
Dave, who has been going to the skatepark for years, since it opened, said it’s become a dark place. Wednesday night was “the worst,” he said. “I’ll never go back.”